It's great to have this on hand in the fridge, because it can be used as a garnish (chop while it's still cold) or topping for bruschetta, as a wrap for small balls of mozzarella cheese or as a side dish for grilled meats (you may wish to dab with paper towels before serving).
Make Ahead: The oil-covered zucchini planks/slices need to be refrigerated for about 1 day, until the oil becomes sludgy or thick. The zucchini may be refrigerated for up to 10 days.
Servings: 25 slices/planks
- 3 to 3 1/2 pounds zucchinis (7 or 8 zucchinis), trimmed, then cut into planks (not rounds, which seem to cook up wetter) about 1/4 inch thick
- 10 stems flat-leaf parsley, minced (3 tablespoons; optional)
- 4 medium cloves garlic, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Olive oil, to cover (at least 1 cup)
Position an oven rack about 6 inches from the broiler element. (If the zucchini is broiled too close to the flame, it will burn. As it is, it will blister.) Preheat the broiler. Line a large baking sheet with several layers of paper towels. Have ready a 9-by-5-inch glass loaf pan/baking dish.
Use nonstick cooking oil spray to lightly grease 2 rimmed baking sheets. Arrange the zucchini planks on the sheets, spaced fairly close together. Broil one sheet at a time for 5 to 7 minutes or until the planks have browned lightly. Then turn the planks over and broil for 2 to 3 minutes, until browned. (You can also grill the zucchinis.)
Transfer the zucchini as it is done to the paper-towel-lined baking sheet. (Some pieces will take longer than others, depending on your stove and the thickness of the planks.) The planks will release some juice. Let them sit for about 10 minutes.
When all the zucchini is broiled, use some of the planks to create a single layer in the loaf pan or baking dish. Sprinkle with a little of the parsley, garlic, and salt and black pepper to taste. Repeat to fill almost to the top using all of the zucchini (pressing down gently as needed), then pour on enough oil to cover the stack. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate immediately.
Refrigerate for at least 2 hours and preferably 1 day, to develop flavors and let the oil get sludgy/thick.
When ready to serve, peel off the zucchini planks from the cold oil as you need them. Make sure the remaining zucchini is covered with oil (and preferably covered with plastic wrap as well). The zucchini may be refrigerated for up to 10 days.
Adapted from "Well-Preserved," by Eugenia Bone (Clarkson Potter, 2009).
Tested by Danielle Newman.
E-mail questions to the Food Section at firstname.lastname@example.org.